Many of the oldest definitive members of the Rosaceae are present in the Eocene upland floras of the Okanogan Highlands of northeastern Washington State and British Columbia, Canada. Over a dozen rosaceous taxa representing extant and extinct genera of all four traditionally recognized subfamilies are known from flowers, fruits, wood, pollen, and especially leaves. The complexity seen in Eocene Rosaceae suggests that hybridization and polyploidy may have played a pivotal role in the early evolution of the family. Increased species diversity and the first appearance of additional modern taxa occur during the Late Paleogene in North America and Europe. The Rosaceae become increasingly important components of fossil floras during the Neogene, with taxa adapted to many habitats.
- Okanogan Highlands
- Temperate floras
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
- Plant Science